In the United States, February is the month known as Black History Month dating back to the late 1970s when what had previously been a week dedicated to African American history was officially changed to a month long celebration and acknowledged by President Gerald Ford. In the last decade or so, Black History Month and sneakers have become synonymous during the month of February, which makes for a busy month for sneaker collectors who also seek out NBA All Star sneakers during the same timeframe.
With Nike leading the way, BHM sneaker releases have become an entire collection of footwear, apparel and accessories. In addition to The Swoosh, other major brands like adidas and PUMA are now creating smaller BHM collections and a handful of other footwear companies also creating celebratory Black History Month inspired designs in recent years. With that in mind, scroll through these 5 Things You Should Know About Black History Month Sneakers.
1. In 2005, Nike Released The First Black History Month Sneaker
The 2005 BHM Air Force 1 design was simple and similar to other Air Force 1 special editions of the era. It consisted of an all white Nike Air Force 1 with a Pan-African flag, which is also known as the UNIA flag or the Afro-American flag and features red, black and green bars, stitched into the heel area. This design would prove to ignite many brands to create BHM sneakers in the years that followed.
2. In 2011, Nike, Jordan And Converse Released BHM Sneakers
After 5 years of a single shoe release representing Black History Month for Nike, The Swoosh and its subsidiaries, Jordan Brand and Converse, all released BHM inspired sneakers. Each featured a primarily black design with gold details. The Air Jordan 3 BHM remains one of the most sought after Black History Month sneakers.
3. In 2012, The First LeBron James Black History Month Sneaker Was Released
While the Kobe signature model was featured in 2011, LeBron James’ signature sneaker was not released as a BHM model until 2012. It remains a rare find, especially in deadstock condition.
4. In 2012, Nike Sportswear Released Black History Month Sneakers For The First Time
2012 was a busy year for Black History Month sneakers. Not only did Nike release a signature sneaker collection but the Sportswear division of Nike also released a handful of classic styles with a BHM inspired design, including the popular Nike Air Huarache and Nike Air Max 1.
5. In 2016, Every Major Sneaker Brand Made Black History Month Shoes
While many brands have made special edition BHM sneakers over the years, 2016 is the largest effort put forth by the footwear industry. This year adidas, PUMA, Nike, Jordan, Under Armour, Peak and more have created Black History Month sneakers, and some even have matching apparel as well.